It's no secret that since its launch, Instagram has always worked toward updating its algorithm. But in recent years, they have notched it up even further and have made it more intelligent than ever.
With each update, the algorithm is designed to meticulously filter the type of content being posted, its relevancy and its recency, and several other factors to better optimize what the users see on their feed.
The most affected by these frequent-algorithm changes are the professional account holders i.e. Businesses and Creators. Previously, all they had to do was to make content that is helpful and relevant to their audience but today, each post has to be cautiously scheduled to fit the best posting times on Instagram.
Yes, posting times do play a part in providing reach to your content. In fact, it is as important as the content you put out there because, even if you post the best piece of content, it is not useful if nobody sees it right?
In January 2022, Adam Moserri (head of Instagram) posted a photo introducing some significant changes like the "Instagram follower feed" which will show posts arranged in chronological order for users to catch up on the most recent posts from people they follow.
With this change coming in the near future, timing your posts (with when your followers are most active) will play a much bigger role in maintaining your brand's relevancy.
But how do you figure out the best time to post on Instagram? Good news..you don't need to because we've done the heavy lifting for you. In this post, we've included everything you need to know about:
· When to post? (best time slots for each day of the week)
· When not to post? (Worst times to post on Instagram)
· Best timings and days for specific businesses and industries.
· Timings for Reels, IGTVs, and Insta live.
· How to find perfect times for your brand/business?
Let's get started, shall we?
Optimal Times To Post On Instagram Each Day Of The Week
Pre-Covid, the best time to post your content was between 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM but since the last quarter of 2021, the timings have gone through some changes.
Combining our research with other studies done by Hubspot, HootSuite, and Later, here is a quick guide for when you should post on Instagram on each day of the week :
On Sundays: 7 P.M.
Engagement on Sundays is usually high the whole day, but 7 P.M. is the sweet spot.
On Saturdays: 9 A.M.
Saturdays posts see the best engagement in early mornings, around 8 am - 9 am.
For Week Days
Monday: 12 P.M.
· On most weekdays (including Monday), the highest Instagram activity is seen between 10 am - and 2 pm.
Tuesday: 9 A.M.
· Similar to Saturdays, posts on Tuesday also get the highest engagement between 9 am.
Wednesday: 11 A.M.
· Wednesday at 11:00 A.M. is observed to have the highest volume of users as well the best engagement out of all other days.
Thursday: 11 A.M.
· Thursday posts are observed to get the most traffic between 10 am - and 1 pm.
Friday: 2 P.M.
· Posting on 2 pm and onwards gets a lot of impressions on Fridays.
According to several pieces of research, these came out as the best global post-timings for Instagram. However, truth be told, these are just general guidelines and may or may not work for you. In no way do these guarantee that your post will go viral. There are tons of other factors involved.
For instance, the timings posted above cater to a specific time zone, in this case, EST. To find the best time for your brand, instead of scheduling posts according to your time zone, see which time zone your customers belong to and set your post-schedule as per that.
Say your customer follows the GMT zone, then you would need to experiment by converting these EST timings to GMT and see when you get the most engagement.
If your audience is spread across the globe or you aren't sure about the time zone, post according to EST since it holds the most number of Instagram users.
To narrow it down on what may work for you, we have included some other important factors that influence the timings for posting on Instagram
· Which Industry Do You Belong To
· The Purpose Of Your Post
· Type Of Format You Use
Let's discuss each of them in-depth in the upcoming sections of this post. Starting with,
Which Industry Do You Belong To
Bombarding your audience with content every day in hopes of getting noticed is the last thing you want to do. Believe it or not, there are days when the users want to see a specific kind of content.
If you want to build a loyal, niche audience for your brand, consider posting on days and times when people actually want to see your industry's content.
Following are the best and worst days and timings to post industry-related content.
Since everybody mostly shops online, you don't want to make any mistakes while promoting your online store.
The best time to post is:
· Wednesday, 3 PM
· Friday, 12 PM
· Noon and Evenings
· After 11 PM and Early mornings
Other best days:
· Any day between Monday- Thursday
Worst days to post:
· The best time is:
Monday, 11 am to 1 pm
· Midnight to early mornings (11 PM - 7:30 AM)
· Monday to Friday (11 AM - 1 PM)
· Thursday and Fridays (12 PM - 2 PM)
· 11 PM - 4 AM
Health Care Brands:
· Tuesdays, 8 AM
· 2 AM - 7 AM
Other best days:
· Monday to Fridays (8 AM - 7 PM)
· Saturday and Sundays
· Thursdays, 9 AM - 1 PM
· Sundays and Mondays
Other Best Days:
· Wednesdays and Fridays
· 11 PM - 6 AM
· Tuesdays (9 AM - 7 PM)
· 10 PM - 3 AM
Other Best days:
· Monday- Saturday (engagement on entertainment posts tends to always be on the higher side)
Food and Beverage Brands
· Mondays and Tuesdays (9 AM - 2 PM)
· 11 PM - 5 AM
Other Best days:
· Fridays and Sundays
Purpose of your Content ?
The second factor in determining when to post is the format of your content.
Instagram has several types of post formats including regular posts, reels, IGTV, and Insta live. To get maximum reach, you need to post a specific type of content at the right time and on the right day.
Moreover, the purpose of your content is another important factor. What I mean by purpose is "what type of results do you want from your post?"
Do you want to reach more accounts? Then reels are the best option!
Do you want to promote your brand? IGTVs is the way to go
Do you want more followers? Reels + Regular posts are the answer
Combine "Timing + Purpose + Format = Viral instagram recipe"
What I essentially mean is you don't want to post 1-hour long IGTV at 6 AM, when most of the users are asleep or you don't want to go live at 11 PM when most people won't be free to join. We've already given you the best timings for regular posts. Now let's move on to the other types of content formats.
Best Time For Reels (EST)
9 AM, 9 PM
6 PM – 7 PM
7 AM, 3 PM
Best Time For IGTVs:
IGTVs are mainly posted to share promotional and informational content. These videos are generally longer than any other formats and are observed to perform best on Wednesday, between 8 to 10 PM. However, even on other weekdays, they can give you pretty good engagement.
When To Post IG Stories?
There's not a specific time when stories will work best. Since they are available for 24 hours, posting them during the workweek is more beneficial than posting them on weekends.
Primetime To Go IG Live:
The success of an Instagram live totally depends on your audience. You need to figure out the time when your followers aren't busy and can join and interact with you.
You shouldn't do a live during work or sleep hours, which makes the evening 5 PM - 8 PM the best period to host an IG live
How To Find The Best Time For YOUR Instagram Brand?
Although all the data included in this post is backed by research done by some of the biggest Social media management companies, they may still not work for you.
Since every business, every brand, and every audience is different, there is no concrete way to estimate what timings will work for you personally. If you are starting out on Instagram, you can definitely give these timings a shot but if you already have been in this space for some time, here's how you can find out the best time to post on Instagram.
Know Who Follows You
To decide on a schedule for your Instagram posts, it is crucial to know who your followers are, meaning what their age demographics are, their occupation, their interests, etc. This way you can calculate when they might be using Instagram the most and accordingly time your posts.
This feature is what differentiates professional accounts from regular accounts. Insights are hands-down, the best way to know everything your post does is like how many people it has reached, how many people engaged with it (liked, shared, saved, etc.), how many of them visited your profile from that post, and much more.
You can experiment with posting different types of content formats, at different times and see which one worked out the best. Repeat for a few ties till you figure out a time slot where your content gets the maximum visibility.
Observe Your Competitors
The fastest way to get success is to learn from others' mistakes and successes. Keep tabs on your competitors' best and worst-performing posts. Check what type of content and more importantly, when they posted that content. This will give you an idea of when people within your industry are most active and what type of content they are most likely to engage with.
Prioritizing what works for you
Instead of focusing on putting out content in all 4 formats (according to all timings mentioned above), focus on what formats work best for you and then experiment with their timings, that way you could put out content that has a way higher chance to go viral.
Bonus Tip: Use hashtags on every post, this will not only show your posts to non-followers but will help your post remain associated with those hashtags for a very long time.
There you have it. Everything related to when you should post on Instagram every day of the week. This data is collected by observing hundreds of thousands of accounts. Experiment using this data on your account and if it works, use it to create an amazing content calendar. It may not be effective immediately after you start using these timings, but be consistent.
Consistency is still one of the major factors for succeeding on social media platforms.
But if for some reason you do not see much improvement even after being regular with your content, by this time you'll have collected enough data to use the tips mentioned near the end to find out timings that personally work best for you.
Moreover, always be on the lookout for Instagram updates, especially regarding post-timings, they go through massive updates all the time.